Feature Friday: Canvas Bookmarklet

One of the distinctive features of canvas is the sticker tray in the upper left of the page.

Canvas stickers

When you use canvas, you drag and drop these stickers onto images to recognize great posts. You also drag and drop the stickers to share on social media services, and to do other things in canvas (like remix). The stickers are the key engagement gestures in canvas.

So it makes sense that the canvas bookmarklet would maintain these engagement gestures outside of the canvas service. Here's a screenshot of the canvas bookmarklet in action on the NY Times website:

Canvas bookmarklet

If you are a Yankee/A-Rod hater like me, how can you resist adding a #1 sticker to that image?

If you want to add the canvas bookmarklet to your browswer, you can get it here.

#Web/Tech

Comments (Archived):

  1. Dave W Baldwin

    Very good.¬† You know the baseball shot we’d put the thumbs up would be the squirrel.Hope he made it on board to Philadelphia.http://www.facebook.com/pho

  2. Hans

    Wow, mindblowing. Imagine a navigation bar with icons on the ipad. All content opened on the ipad can be shared via FB, twitter, your favourite bulletin board, etc, by simply dragging and dropping an icon on the content. Content will automatically be stored within a (i)Cloud.I would love such a feature!

    1. fredwilson

      me too

      1. FAKE GRIMLOCK

        FLOCK HAVE RIGHT IDEA. FUTURE OF CONSUME EVERYTHING MORE SOCIAL.IT NOT CATCH ON UNTIL BUILT INTO MOBILE.ANDROID G+ PHONE HAVE BEST CHANCE, UNLESS APPLE GET SERIOUS ABOUT SOCIAL.

  3. Tom Labus

    I like Canvas but as a Yankee fan, it’s a tuff morning!!

    1. Joe Yevoli

      Yea, I’m looking forward to checking out canvas.. but i seriously hate everything about this post… terrible job, Fred… ūüėČ

  4. FAKE GRIMLOCK

    THIS MAKE PHOTO SHOW UP IN STREAM ON CANV.AS?IF YES, THAT INTERESTING.BUT CANV.AS STILL MOSTLY BORING INSIDE JOKES FOR 4CHAN. AND FORCE FACEBOOK LOGIN. BOTH BIG MISTAKE.(YES, GRIMLOCK RECOGNIZE REAL REASON FOR FB LOGIN IS PREVENT WORST 4CHAN PEOPLE FROM GO TO CANV.AS. ME SAY NO HALF GET IN BED WITH FACEBOOK. EITHER NO MAKING OUT AND EMBRACE SCUM OF HUMANITY, OR MAKE BREAKFAST IN MORNING WITH FB APP AND TOTAL INTEGRATION)

    1. andyswan

      ME NOTICE GRIMLOCK GETTING A LITTLE LONG WINDED IN OLD AGE

      1. JamesHRH

        It is most likely just a critically low coffee level……

        1. RadJaz

          Its probably because its Friday and he’s eager to get out with the rest of the Dinobots

        2. FAKE GRIMLOCK

          INTERNET BEFORE COFFEE ALWAYS BAD IDEA.

      2. Ryan Frew

        “EITHER NO MAKING OUT AND EMBRACE SCUM OF HUMANITY, OR MAKE BREAKFAST IN MORNING WITH FB APP AND TOTAL INTEGRATION”Long winded perhaps, but still brilliant and quotable.

        1. andyswan

          Absolutely….just raising a yellow flag ūüôā

    2. ShanaC

      that is because sleeping with facebook causes the equivalent of internet stds

      1. FAKE GRIMLOCK

        ONLY IF DEFINE MOVE IN, TAKE ALL STUFF, KICK OUT FRIENDS, RUN YOUR LIFE AS A STD.

        1. ShanaC

          That sounds more like a bad bf or gf. Not bad, abusive and controlling. (FYI – if your partner does do these things, please call a shelter.)

          1. FAKE GRIMLOCK

            YES. THAT POINT OF JOKE GRIMLOCK MAKE. FB IS BAD  PARTNER.

    3. Brandon Burns

      4chan has a niche, but wacky photos are universal. case in point: the cheezeburger networkfake grimlock no love kitty photo?!

      1. FAKE GRIMLOCK

        MOST OF CANV.AS HUMOR REQUIRE KNOW 4CHAN. THAT MEAN NOT FUNNY FOR NORMAL HUMANS.

        1. testtest

          if i was christopher poole i’d disrupt myself (4chan).

          1. FAKE GRIMLOCK

            YES.

    4. fredwilson

      yes, it makes the photo show up in canvasi believe getting canvas to work off of canvas is one important way to move it beyond the 4chan vibe

      1. FAKE GRIMLOCK

        ME, GRIMLOCK, AGREE. WALLED GARDEN FOR MAKE MEMES THAT LIVE ONLY IN WALLED GARDEN NOT GO ANYWHERE.

  5. Marvin Ryan Vista

    Thank you sir. I will try this on my blog.

  6. andyswan

    Quite interesting.¬† Actually, I love it.¬† Very natural expressions and method.¬† Everyone has positive memories of “stickers” on their work….

  7. andyswan

    I have a natural suspicion of anyone that is a fan of the American League in general.

    1. Aaron Klein

      That’s only reasonable. We’re talking about a league that takes the easy way out and doesn’t make their pitchers learn how to hit.

      1. brett

        In fairness to the AL, your criticism sounds like it could apply to the National League as well: having to hit and learning how to hit are two separate things ;)I’ll take watching an Edgar Martinez to a flailing pitcher any day!

        1. Aaron Klein

          Ha! Fair enough.My formula is quite simple. The Dodgers are in the NL, so I am too. ūüôā

          1. Elia Freedman

            I’m in the AL (Indians… real fans root for loser teams) but you’ll never catch me rooting for the Yankees. So I guess I’m a fair weather AL fan?

          2. Aaron Klein

            ¬Ľ Aaron KleinSent from my Android

          3. Aaron Klein

            We’re both definitely “real fans”…the Dodgers haven’t been to the World Series since 1988.And now our idiot owner is selling the scoreboard and renting out Tommy Lasorda for birthday parties.But I’m hanging in there. Another 1988 is right around the corner. ;)¬Ľ Aaron KleinSent from my Android

        2. matthughes

          Amen.The easy way out is exactly that: the easy out at the bottom of every single NL line up.

        3. andyswan

          It’s not about the hitting prowess of the pitcher, it’s about the tough decisions that managers face as a result….and how much more interesting the game becomes with a double-switch and a sacrifice bunt thrown in. ¬†But don’t let me stop you from enjoying the non-stop thrills of watching a former slugger spend his twilight years participating in under 5% of the actual game.

          1. brett

            Aaaahhahahaahaha! Double-switches and sacrifice bunts! That’s rich. You’re cute. I won’t even bring up the term “sabermetrics” because I’m sure you’ll say that’s only for guys who live in their mothers’ basements.

  8. Aaron Klein

    I swear I was replying to Andy with this comment. Oh well, I’ll move it.

  9. testtest

    i think there’s going to be a massive shift away from the book metaphor on the web. its current¬†manifestation has straddled the old¬†paradigm.this will be enabled either by increased APIs on the underside of the web, or just accessing the open web directly — if you can get to it via a browser it’s an API.

    1. laurie kalmanson

      not sure where that leaves instapaper? i love it on my phone …

      1. testtest

        i think articles etc will stay in tact (at least at the source), but you won’t have the interactive elements, social, metadata,¬†collaboration¬†mechanisms, or real-time aspects.¬†¬†

        1. laurie kalmanson

          sounds right. hmmm. instapaper should add bookmarklet features.

    2. fredwilson

      check out wattpad.comwe invested in it recently

      1. testtest

        quite like these aspects of wattpad:1) talking about books is inherently social (book clubs etc)2) following a book creates its own narrative: or meta-narrative (people want to stick around to find out what happens)3) according to a survey by the jenkins group ~80% of people in the US want to write a book4) platform reduces the friction for content production5) content this length is already being produced/consumed on the web (fan fiction etc). and on devices that continue to gain market share (ipads, lower end tables, phones)6) social acceptance and adoption of electronic books is strong7) production of viral content (1% of content, or whatever); which by proxy makes the site viral

        1. fredwilson

          yupi like it very much tooit fits very well into the christensen model of disruption

  10. Brandon Burns

    been on canvas beta for months, didn’t see any real legs outside of just a fun toy… until now.fucking rad way to bookmark. m00t is my hero.

  11. awaldstein

    Personalized, shareable bookmarklets.I like it.I would spend some time rethinking sticker design. How they look is what they are and they can be more.

    1. harvey

      do you really like personalized, shareable bookmarkets? or do you just feel compelled to post a comment on every single fred wilson blog post? i know, i know, “i’m just anonymous” and so forth and so on and etc etc. sometimes i just wonder if fred wilson could post about pink elephants and unicorns and the “instigators” would say he was spot on with his analysis. or, maybe i’m projecting, and you really do like “personalized, shareable bookmarklets.” no need to get riled up, i’m going to drink natural organic wine now, so we’re all friends here.¬†

      1. fredwilson

        do you really need to go negative?

    2. laurie kalmanson

      delicious but easier and prettierthey are back: it feels like version 1.0 with a pinterest interface; their¬† “stacks” feel like pinterest’s “boards” — or personal versions of the topic cubes below the fold on cnn, but created by you or me, not editorshttp://delicious.com/http://pinterest.com/http://www.cnn.com/

      1. awaldstein

        pinterest is new to me. Heading to look.A delicious direction as in find and personalize and share I agree with.i think canvas is raw and a bit amorphous now but I sense that they are on to a platform for a behavior that feels like it might be right.

  12. Tom Labus

    The historically inferior play of the NL has always been of great concern to baseball fans around the country.

    1. laurie kalmanson

      and to cub fans, esp

  13. im2b_dl

    aaah.. we are getting to one piece of social tv.  only branding marks for personalized and open to those you know.working on it..with everything else.

    1. Dave W Baldwin

      insightful

  14. Elia Freedman

    You a Mets fan, Fred? Or just anti-ARod?

    1. fredwilson

      both

      1. Alex Murphy

        that is beautiful.lol

      2. laurie kalmanson

        the mets are the team of the people.in 1969, when i was a child:a) the mets won the world series — everyone at school had transistor radios while we waited for iPhones to be inventedAND(b) neil armstrong walked on the moonthese conjoined facts were proof that anything could happen.where is that proof now? it exists for me in startup culture but i don’t know how it translates for the larger culture

  15. John Delaney

    As a fellow a-rod hater, I just wanted to point out that this is the second straight year that he’s ended the Yankees’ season with a photo op-inspiring strike out (he struck out to Neftali Feliz to end game 6 of the ALCS last year). ¬†Not a huge deal, but makes for great images on canv.as or wherever!¬†Given a-rod’s .111 average in the ALDS this year, and his $27.5m/year contract through 2017, should NYY fans occupy Wall Street or Yankee Stadium?

  16. Steve Poland

    So these bookmarklets are going to stay, eh? Really thought they were too complex for average Joe to add into browser, but Pinterest is >1mm I think, and I wonder how many posts on Tumblr occur (%) from bookmarklet.

  17. Bryan J Wilson

    “If you are a Yankee/A-Rod hater like me, how can you resist adding a #1 sticker to¬†that image?”I can’t! And I inherently trust anyone who hates the Yanks/A-Rod. Well done!

  18. testtest

    may be worth considering/testing integrating cavas elements on other image sites, and having a way to drive traffic back to the participating partners: a platform with value creation of N².

    1. FAKE GRIMLOCK

      CANV.AS AS PHASE 2 @DISQUS MUCH MORE INTERESTING THAN STICKERS FOR NERD JOKES.

      1. testtest

        agreed. it’s¬†differentiated itself to a point where it’s not within the competitive set of other image sites.¬†which is why it can create a layer of value over the rest of the market and be a platform.i would focus on the core users still; the most engaged users. that’s better than spreading out and trying to capture users who don’t “get” the service.¬†the value creation is still on the site itself, with the remixing of images and¬†socializing around that. if people want to share images without the remix there are already sites that meet the¬†need.

  19. kirklove

    The Canvas stickers are a super slick touch.PS: So happy the Yankees lost. Go Phils!

  20. matthughes

    Came to AVC today looking for solace…Instead it’s salt in the wounds.The Yankees have to tip their cap to the Tigers…that was a hard fought series.

  21. tompkin

    It seems to me that the internet started off as the cafeteria for nerds. We’ve spent the last nearly twenty years making it safe for the popular kids.¬† My sense is that stickers and bookmarklets will go straight to a nerd table and the popular kids will walk right by, never so much as acknowledging their existence.¬† Although Fred Wislon, nerd kingpin, is lining them with lunch money, so they should be immune to bullies, at least for now.

    1. fredwilson

      yeah, but nerds still build the internet. you can’t ignore nerds

      1. tompkin

        that’s my point. i think the internet is a less interesting place when we’re in such a hurry to make it safe for the popular kids.¬†

        1. fredwilson

          i am in violent agreement with you

        2. Jon Atrides

          Maybe making the Internet appealing to the popular kids forces us to think differently and create better products. Tapping into nerd sensibilities is less of a challenge than making the lazy mainstream notice.

  22. raycote

    So generically speaking, this is a visually represented palette of verb/process icons that allows the user to drag any desired¬†verb/process¬†icon onto any given¬†visually represented noun/object on the page in order to execute that verb’s behavior on said noun ?So in a way, this is kind of like a visual-programming-sequencer¬†interface for the rest of us ?Any user could in theory drag multiple¬†verb/process icons onto any given¬†noun/object to execute a sequence of behaviours or define a case statement triggered behaviour ?Multiple end users could in theory drag any cumulative sequence of these verb/process icons onto the same visual noun/object, within a given time window, social event synchronizing clock tick, to execute a socially-driven neural-net outcome behaviour ?And with some kind of open, federated API, those¬†socially driven neural-net outcome behaviours could be integrated into higher level social-neural-net outcome behaviours which in turn could feed any number of¬†open,¬†purpose driven, social-metrics based dashboards ?

    1. Dave W Baldwin

      Be careful of the ‘net’ in neural, for it can become tangled very easy.Otherwise, we can push dimensions¬† ūüėČ

      1. raycote

        I see the smily at the end of your comment.But still, I must admit your comment went right over my head ?Most of my comments here are just free-wheeling brain-storm machinations.In particular my machinations about the opportunity to apply the universally recurring themes and schemas of organic-network-dynamics as a potentially useful top-down roadmap-overlay in the struggle to design and construct bottom-up social-networking structures that are more likely to be socially functional, safe and enduring.WHY inflict one’s machinations on other in this forum ?In the hope that others will kick the stuffing out of those machinations.in a word, I’m on the hunt for SUBLATIONSUBLATION – from the german word AufhebenA term used by Hegel to explain what happens when a thesis and antithesis interact in a productive mental thrashing so as to generate a new perspective or modelling of a process. This new thesis, on how to visualize the process, is a synthesize of the best elements distilled via constructive arm wrestling between thesis and antithesis. Key terms and concepts in both the thesis and antithesis are both preserved and changed through their dialectical interplay. Key terms and concepts is both the thesis and antithesis are SUBLATED, subjugated and subsumed into a newly evolved thesis. This newly evolved thesis generates a new antithesis and the process of thesis-antithesis SUBLATION spirals off into the endless ether of historical evolution.Sublation is far more productive than his evil twin brotherMr. Polemic, who often masquerades as his brother!My goalhaving others kick the stuffing out of my machinationsnever really seems to materialize here on AVC.MY GUESS AS TO WHY ?-The AVC community is far too civil to give those free-wheeling¬†machinations the thrashing they most often deserve.-Most AVC commenters are hard working finance/marketing/coding professionals who don’t have time to waste on such pedantic interloping.-My comment are simply too inarticulate to be engaging.SIGINGEDMr. Left Curious”Be careful of the ‘net’ in neural, for it can become tangled very easy” ? ? ?

        1. Dave W Baldwin

          Dude… no insult was intended¬† ;)SUBLATION is beautiful due to the Thesis and alleged opposite are not truly working against each other, but often times lend a part of theirself to the improvement of the other.My reference to neural netting simply refers to the temptation coming over the next 18 months for people to hail big money’s attempt to force acceptance of their development as being absolute.¬† This is going to turn a market study of oral interface into something it isn’t.¬† There are more in the wings ready to make such false claims in the arena of higher AI… and their nets will become a mess.Cutting to the chase, no matter how much money is heaped on to something, if its foundation has cracks, it will come apart.Otherwise, your original post is on the money.¬† It is simply a matter of bringing together the different points transmitting thoughts/pics that can move the ‘neural network’ via ‘transmitters’ in a fluid way.¬† Allowing this from all directions delivers the 3D analogy and will bring about marked improvement in productivity/cost/profit benefitting a bigger group.Once again, my reply was complimentary.

  23. LE

    Having to use a bookmarklet is a non-starter on this idea. It’s not something “my aunt” isgoing to use even if “she” wanted to.¬†¬† Ditto for the domain hack canv.as.¬† How is this going to hit the tipping point?From techcrunch, written in May 2010:”Whatever Canvas really as (sic), it has to be fairly innovative, considering that some of tech‚Äôs most notable and astute investors are betting on the product.”This reminds me of the scene in “the right stuff” where everybody assumed Yeager had flight clearance and didn’t question anything while he taxied down the runway.

    1. testtest

      Having to use a bookmarklet is a non-starter on this idea. It’s not something “my aunt” isgoing to use even if “she” wanted to.¬†¬† Ditto for the domain hack¬†canv.as.¬† How is this going to hit the tipping point?interesting comment.who’s in the target market? your “aunt”, i would suggest not.4chan has ~18m uniques a month, a pretty decent signal for the¬†potential¬†market size in <1 minute searching on google.

      1. theskinnychrischristie

        why would usv invest in it if they didn’t think the target audience was your aunt. youporn.com has ~18m uniques a month. usv doesn’t invest in that. etc etc.

        1. testtest

          because if the market’s large enough without people’s “aunts”, and it meets the hurdle for market size/number of users (the minimum size for usv) then it’s a viable investment, at least on that dimension.youporn.com¬†has ~18m uniques a month. usv doesn’t invest in that. etc etc.there’s multiple factors for investment, not just uniques. for a start youporn probably has illegal content hosted on it.

          1. theskinnychrischristie

            canvas almost certainly has illegal content hosted on it (e.g., copyright violation). i’m not buying your argument.happy friday.

          2. testtest

            that was just a quick example. there’s degrees of risk, investment¬†inherently has risk — the interplay of money, risk, and time.¬† here’s 10 more off the top of my head:- geographic location- market conditions (macro)- previous experience with similar businesses- ethics- team (as LE pointed out)- size of potential market- barriers to entry- funding required (firms have upper limits)- perceived legal risk (e.g copyright violation)- degrees of competitive advantage in the product or business modelAnd some of the factors are more equal [email protected]:disqus¬†excellent point. imho getting the weighting right for the factors is crucial. for example, if i was given the options of team, product, or market, product would be weighted the least: you can always iterate to a better product, but you’re stuck with the team, and market.¬†

          3. LE

            “there’s multiple factors for investment, not just uniques.”And some of the factors are more equal thanothers.For example the previous success (or enthusiasm) of the team and their presentation.¬†

      2. LE

        There’s an expression “everyone and their uncle”. That’sthe purpose of putting “my aunt” in quotes. It’s likesaying this has limited appeal.Requiring a bookmarklet will inhibit the spread of this service.So will the use of the domain “canv.as”.¬†I haven’t signed up for an account so I am going by what the Fred’s post says.¬†Also Fred’s screen shot shows “canvas”. It doesn’t show “canv.as” and even if it did a significant part of the net doesn’t understand what that is. Whyexactly use a .as cctld? What’s the advantage? Coolfor people in the know? That doesn’t work (as shown by my use of “aunt” which didn’t work).By the way, from what stat service are you getting that 4chan has 18m uniques a month?¬† Is it Alexa? Compete’s not showing those numbers. Also note that Alexa thinks avc.com is “skc.or.jp” (picture attached or go to http://www.alexa.com/sitein… )See this article from 2009 about tryingto monetize 4chan:http://www.niemanlab.org/20

        1. testtest

          There’s an expression “everyone and their uncle”. That’sthe purpose of putting “my aunt” in quotes. It’s likesaying this has limited appeal.i understood the meaning, that’s why i put it in double quotations. i didn’t think your aunt was literally confused. although the average aunt probably would be; that doesn’t matter though, aunts, and “aunts” aren’t in the target market.Also Fred’s screen shot shows “canvas”.¬†It doesn’t show “canv.as” and even if it did a significant¬†part of the net doesn’t understand what that is. Whyexactly use a .as cctld? What’s the advantage? Coolfor people in the know?yes, exactly!”18m users” source:¬†http://techcrunch.com/2011/…See this article from 2009 about tryingto monetize 4chan:increased engagement creates new monetization options/different revenue models.

        2. fredwilson

          i’m not entirely sure what the deal is with avc and alexa. i do know that avc is blocked by some content filters. i think it has a sordid past. i like that.

    2. fredwilson

      i don’t disagree about the URLand bookmarklets are for power users

  24. Pete Davies

    That’s pretty cool, thanks for posting it. It’s great to see different approaches to sharing content. I’m trying to get away from using the mouse while browsing (keyboard shortcuts ftw) but I think I’m in a minority there…

  25. maithreyi

    Bookmarklets are an age old concept with varying levels of success Р am really curious to see if this is done correctly. Thanks Fred! One more thing to play with this weekend!

  26. Mark

    Ah, a multi-dimensional like button, eh?Can you make custom stickers? That’s what I’d be all about.Little internet banksy’s. That would be cool, Fred.

    1. fredwilson

      great idea

  27. JSWendt

    Fred…hate? Not from you!jsw